Recently completed projects and a quick primer on gauge
I have been working on custom orders. One of which was this darling R2D2 beanie. I found the pattern and worked it up using a G hook and worsted weight yarn.
These are hockey skate baby booties and they are super adorable. I know hockey skates are usually black, but these are to go with the hat below and I thought the blue for the St. Louis Blues was just too cute. The pattern was from Irish Hooks and Yarn on Craftsy.
The hats below are actually the same hat. The button makes the puck and flower interchangeable. It is a standard earflap beanie made for a 3-6 month old. I used a 1.5″ button and stuck a St. Louis Blues logo sticker on it. This is a custom order for a baby shower where the sex of the baby is unknown. Thus, it need to be made for a boy or a girl.
I used this from Micah Makes for the flower. Using the same method, I constructed a hockey puck for the boy version.
Now for gauge. I had a friend ask me on instagram to explain gauge. While I usually cannot spell it right, I have a good grasp on it. Do I usually worry about it? Only when I’m making hats or sweaters.
Gauge is basically stitches per inch. If your recommended gauge reads 16 stitches per 4 inches, it means you should be getting 4 stitches per inch. Why is this important? It is important for things that need to be a certain size. If you are knitting/crocheting a hat and you are supposed to be getting 4 stitches per inch and you are getting 2 stitches per inch, the items is going to be way too big. (for example: You casted on 80 stitches. The designer anticipated a 20 inches piece pursuant to the gauge, but at 2 stitches per inch your piece is going to be 40 inches)
Needles and hook sizes are recommended by the pattern designer. However, it is not uncommon to go up or down 1, 2 or 3 needle or hook sizes because you knit/crochet with a different tension than the designer. You can knit/crochet at a different tension depending on how stressed you are or … cough, cough… how much wine you have had to drink. Gauge also varies due to the thickness or brand of yarn. I might use a g hook with one brand of worsted weight, but use an E hook with another.
Making a gauge swatch is your chance to check your tension before you spend the time to make the entire thing only to discover that your finished project is either way too big, or way too small. Your gauge swatch is also useful to determine how you want to block or wash an item once you have completed it. Ruining a swatch is preferable to ruining a sweater you just spent months completing.
However, if I am making a scarf or a stuffed animal, I don’t really worry about gauge. If my stuffed animal is bigger, it doesn’t bother me.
Hope this helps. Please feel free to post other questions. I’ll answer them to the best of my ability. I am working on orders right now. Once those are done, I can go back to designing and resizing hats.